Thule Apex vs Vertex


Mountain bicycling is an amazing hobby both as entertainment and as a method to stay fit but unfortunately our car is not designed to carry the bike which is why we need racks like Thule Apex Vs Vertex to transport them safely and conveniently. For those who often spend the weekend pedaling off-road, you may want to have one as well. If you are also eyeing these racks, go check what they can offer and pick one that suits your application or preference the most below.

In this article, we are going to give you information about:

  • How to Transport a Bike
  • What are Thule Apex and Vertex
  • What Thule Apex and Vertex Look Like
  • How to Install Thule Apex and Vertex
  • What else Thule Apex and Vertex can offer
  • Are Thule Apex and Vertex Easy to Use
  • Thule Apex Vs Vertex

Transporting Bike

Bicycling is one of the most popular hobbies that you can do when spending the weekend or just to achieve a better fitness because of its benefits especially if you are more into active lifestyle and prefer a light adventure while exercising. Bicycling on city road is fun and all but they are not going to provide the same amount of exercise as well as experience we get from hitting the pedal off-road. Mountain biking not only will provide you with much fun but also improve the bicycling skills.

One issue we often faced when planning to go somewhere and set our adventure is transporting the bike itself because they are not made to be conveniently moved around when not being used unless you are using foldable bike which is definitely not the case here. Security is our biggest concern when transporting them for they will be exposed or visible, and most importantly adding a weight and dimension to your vehicle. We also don’t recommend leaving your expensive bikes on rack unattended for they will attract thieves.

  1. Bikes in your luggage area and this is what most of us do when first transporting a bike without much preparation because it is the most convenient and while it is almost impossible to fit a standard bike in a car’s trunk, we can detach the front wheel together with folding the back seat to provide more room for the frame. It is safe but you will have to do some quick assembling when taking them out and, most cases depending on the car we can only fit one bike here.
  2. If you prefer the car’s length stay the same while carrying a bike, the best option will be a top mount rack that will keep your bike standing straight on top of the car’s roof. It is ideal when you need to access the car’s trunk for they won’t get in the way and you still have the hitch unoccupied. 
  3. The last and probably most popular is by installing a hitch rack which as the name suggest will occupy your hitch. This type of bike rack will add length into your vehicle and depending on the model, some of them will close the access to your trunk as well. However, the reason why most people are fond of using hitch rack is because they are easy to mount and taken off for we don’t need to climb the car’s roof; just unlock its latches then we are ready to go.
Thule Apex Thule Vertex
Shipping Weight44.1 pounds41.4 pounds
Product Dimensions: 45 x 18 x 11 inches42 x 18 x 10 inches
Best Priceclick hereclick here

About Thule Apex and Vertex

There are various methods to carry your bike in the car and we can choose the one that fits you application the most but if you are planning to carry more than one bike, the best solution is with a bike rack, whether you prefer the roof rack or the hitch rack. However, for those who are looking for the best convenient, hitch rack not only easy to install but also easy to use including when you need to take the bike out.

We have so many good options when it comes to bike racks and all of them should be able to help you provide some method to carry the bike but for those who are in the market for a high quality hitch racks, Thule is a good answer you may want to consider. This brand is well-known for reliable products and the hitch racks from its collection are among the most popular in the market, not surprising to see how easy and convenient they are.

If you also prefer hitch rack, Thule Apex and Vertex are two amazing options to consider because they will let you carry more than a couple of bikes safely on the back of your car and more importantly, they are very secure. These models are very similar to each other which makes users have to put them side by side to make sure they are getting the best option but in general, none of them will disappoint you for all of the basic capabilities stay the same.

What makes them different is the fact that Apex is a more expensive hitch rack and this is because it has an additional feature which is not available on the other version. It is not a crucial of must-haves for all users but we do think it will put your mind at ease and aiding its installation a little bit. In addition, both of Thule Apex and Vertex are also coming in different capacity to choose starting from the standard 2 to 5 bikes.

Thule Apex and Vertex Design

Unlike similar hitch racks like Swagman XC Vs XTC, these hitch rack doesn’t add a tray on its frame in which you have to put the wheels which means less steel to worry about despite most of them can be folded when not being used. These racks are identical in a glance so it is not surprising to see many customers confused about which to choose since the overall appearance and even the design options are the same with one huge pole and foldable arms.

The arms are placed on each side and depending on which capacity you pick, they will go longer as the amount of bike mounted increase. The one we use as an example here are the 4 bikes Apex and 2 bikes Vertex and as you can see they have the same strap to secure your bikes. As for the capacity, each version is able to carry up to 35 pounds bike per strap depending on their version with distance between bike approximately at 5.5-inch.

Installing Thule Apex and Vertex 

One of the most asked questions when people are buying a hitch rack for bikes is the installation system and in this side, Thule Apex and Vertex are equally easy with nothing to be stressed about yet, they are also different. Apex is coming with 1.25 shank and 2-inch adapter thus, it will fit any hitch receiver we have. For example, if you have 2-inch hitch receiver, open the auto pin and put the adapter by holding the carrying handle located at the top of its vertical pole. 

Put the stinger into the receiver and after it clears, let the auto pin rest back so it will automatically snag itself into place. With Vertex, the installation is still simple but instead coming with auto pin on its 2-inch adapter, this version is secured with a standard 4mm screw. 

Thule Apex and Vertex Features

Moving further, let’s see what is the feature that set these hitch racks apart and in this side, it is about their securing system. Together with the 4mm bolt, the Vertex is coming with an addition of 19mm bolt and this is called the anti-shake system which add security into the rack. This bolt is also paired with multi tool to properly snug the bolt and keep the rack at a very firm state. In Apex, this system is different because now we are getting an anti-wobble knob.

This knob is located on your left side of the rack and it is used to keep the rack from shaking. A tip to use the knob is lift the rack a little bit while you turn the knob clockwise because it will give a much firmer result than when being done without being lifted. It also has a key to lock this knob so no one can mess with the rack when you leave it unattended.

In addition to their securing feature, Thule Apex and Vertex are also coming with a tilting frame and this is among what we love the most from these racks. There is a lever on the base of the frame and when you lift it, the main pole will slightly bent backward to provide a room so we can access the trunk area.

Mounting Bike in Thule Apex and Vertex

Using these bike racks are also very easy, first unclench the strap on each part along with the cradle and put the frame into the cushioning part or right in the middle. These racks straps and cradles are rubbery and has small cushions to protect the frame from getting scratched while the vehicle is moving. There are two frame straps and one cradle strap to secure the vertical bike frame or the one below the saddle.

It is always recommended to mount the heavier bike first if you are loading more than one and alternate the direction so their handlebar won’t bump into each other. Besides the standard strap, Thule Apex and Vertex are also featured with integrated lock to secure all bikes at once and it is secured with key thus, you can leave them unattended with less worries about someone stealing the bikes.

Thule Apex vs Vertex

- 1-1/4" and 2" hitch mount carrier for transporting up to five bikes, that leans back when unloaded, allowing access to vehicle hatchbacks
- Bikes lock to carrier, and carrier to vehicle using the included cable and hitch locks;Carbon frame compatible
- Integrated auto pin functions as hitch pin, and moves into place with an audible click.Folded dimensions 14 x 38 x 17 inches Distance between bikes 5.5 inches
- Hold Fast cradles absorb the shock of the road protecting your bike during transport and patented No-Sway cages prevent bike to bike contact
- Hitch mount carrier for transporting up to two bikes - compatible with both 1-1/4" and 2" hitch receivers
- Improved hitch switch folds arms down when not in use and tilts an unloaded carrier away from hatchbacks
- Arched mast and bike arm design for easier bike loading and carrying performance and increased mast height for improved ground clearance
- Thule Hold Fast cradles cushion bike and provide maximum bike security

Bike rack is necessary if you are going to carry more than one bikes and properly keeping them safe. Thule Apex and Vertex are a great option for those who want hitch racks but they are different on the installation and securing feature. Vertex is easy to install but it uses a more traditional locking mechanism through the 19 mm bolt while the Apex has a more modern anti-wobble knob which can be locked to keep your rack more secure.


All in all both of them are reliable and most of the features stay the same depending on which you prefer better but, if budget is not an issue, we do recommend getting Thule Apex for it has better security system.


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